Update -- 9/10/2015
Thanks in part to the support of Keep Electricity Affordable advocates, the Colowyo Mine took a big step forward in its efforts to continue to serve communities across the West by providing fuel for affordable, reliable power.
The U.S. Department of the Interior has approved and signed a modified mine plan for Colowyo Mine to keep the mine open for operations. The new Environmental Assessment completed by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) found no significant impact from mining operations on the environment.
More than 1,500 people took action to submit comments to OSMRE through SupportColowyo.org, a website set up by the communities in northwest Colorado. Thousands more commented directly to OSMRE through other channels, including KEA supporters who responded to our action alert emails and who engaged with our team at three fairs in the region.
Now a federal judge must decide whether to concur with the OSMRE finding.
Over the past few weeks, we’ve asked you to make your voices heard to support the Colowyo Mine in northwest Colorado in the face of a lawsuit against the OSMRE. A poor outcome in this situation could threaten to close the mine, a key link in the supply chain that provides affordable, reliable power across large swaths of the West.
As a result of this lawsuit, a U.S. District Court Judge ordered OSMRE to complete an environmental assessment of the mine within 120 days. Operating under this unusually constricted timeframe, OSMRE worked diligently to release a draft Environmental Assessment on July 27 and open a 19-day comment period. To ensure a robust public process, it was important for the agency to receive significant feedback from the local community and from all those who might be affected by a disruption in the mine’s operations.
Fortunately, advocates for Colowyo did not disappoint. Over 1,500 people took action and submitted their thoughts and concerns to OSMRE through a website set up for that purpose by the communities in northwest Colorado. Thousands of others commented directly to OSMRE through other channels, including KEA supporters who responded to our action alert emails and who engaged with our canvassers at three county fairs in the region.
Now that the comment period is over, the OSMRE has until September 6 to complete its Environmental Assessment. We will continue updating you on this important issue as more information becomes available.
Thank you for your continued interest and support! Please continue to visit www.SupportColowyo.org for updates.